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Kathleen Murphy Kemp

Joined the RPO in 1977

Kathleen Murphy Kemp is Assistant Principal Cello of the RPO and has been a full time member of the cello section since 1977. A graduate of the Eastman School of Music, she earned a bachelor of music and a master’s degree in performance and literature as well as the performer’s certificate. She serves on the collegiate and community ed. faculties of both the Eastman School of Music and the Hochstein School of Music and Dance. She is the coordinator of the Orchestra Studies Diploma Program and mentor of the secondary cello teachers at Eastman. She is a member of Pi Kappa Lambda and was awarded Musician of the Year by Mu Phi Epsilon. She is also a recipient of the RPO Musicians’ Award for Outstanding Music Educators.

She has participated in the Chamber Music Rochester series, Roycroft Chamber Music Festival, Skaneateles Festival, Fortissismo Festival, Academy of Medicine Salon Concerts as well as Aspen Music Festival, Sarasota Festivals, and Music Academy of the West where she was a concerto winner.

As a strong advocate for music education, Kemp served over 10 years on the Rochester Philharmonic Youth Orchestra Board and during her tenure developed the Mentor Program (RPO musicians coaching RPYO students). She is the co-founder of the chamber music program at the Hochstein School, a program for beginning through advanced young musicians with an interest in learning the art of chamber music playing. She devotes much of her time to educational volunteerism and has been honored with the RPO Volunteer Recognition Award and the Philharmonic League Fanfare Ward for Education.

Teachers have included Einar Holm, Ron Leonard, Alan Harris, Robert Newkirk, Gabor Rejto and Gregor Piatogorsky. She is married to Randy Kemp and is the proud mom to Megan Kemp (violin teacher and performer) and Michael Kemp (professional percussionist and timpanist).